Following the success of two previous books about the design, construction and management of mountain bike trails, IMBA has embarked on a new book project. Scheduled for release in 2013, the latest book has the working title Bike Parks: IMBA’s Guide to Creating New-School Riding Facilities.
“There’s a clear need for this information,” said IMBA’s Chris Bernhardt. “As the director of IMBA’s professional trail building services, I know that we have been absolutely swamped with inquiries about bike parks, flow trails and other emerging categories of mountain bike facilities. Our organization’s goal is to support great riding experiences — we know that publishing a book will equip mountain bikers, land managers and others to rapidly advance their projects.”
The bike parks book will provide practical advice and best practices designed for professional land managers, volunteers and recreation providers of all kinds. As with IMBA’s previous titles, both IMBA staff members and a variety of experts from outside the organization will provide the information.
To that end, IMBA seeks well-qualified contributors to write essays on related topics, including:
- Establishing the vision for a successful park
- Site selection for small, medium and large bike parks
- Understanding liability and risk management issues
- Building realistic budgets and timelines
- Creating professional renderings, schematics and other vital graphics
- The importance of landscaping, signage and amenities
- Finding the best soil and construction materials
- Designing and building features for all ability levels
- Fundraising: How much money will we need?
Prospective authors should contact IMBA Communications Director markeller [at] imba [dot] com (Mark Eller). Most writing assignments will be compensated. Submissions will be selected, reviewed and edited by IMBA staff.
IMBA hired Bob Allen and Pete Webber — both recent inductees to the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame — to oversee the project. Allen, the book’s editor, has spent nearly three decades documenting mountain biking through photography and writing. Webber serves as the book’s executive editor.
Webber oversaw both of IMBA’s previous books: Trail Solutions: IMBA’s Guide to Building Sweet Singletrack (2004), and Managing Mountain Biking: IMBA’s Guide to Providing Great Riding (2007). IMBA has sold nearly 30,000 copies of these two books in 60 countries worldwide. They have informed countless land managers, been cited in scientific literature and have shaped the core curriculum for thousands of IMBA trail building classes.
If you have an interest in bike parks, please consider taking IMBA's online survey about the qualities that create a high-quality park experience. Look for results and conclusions in the upcoming book.
Rockburn Skills Park (Maryland) photo courtesy of Jim Boles.